July 11, 2017 1:03 pm
Updated: July 11, 2017 5:36 pm

Ontario minimum wage committee hearings a bit of an eye opener

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne speaks about Ontario's Fair Housing Plan during a press conference in Toronto on April 20, 2017.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov
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Sounds like Day 1 of the provincial government’s committee hearings on the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act was a bit of an eye opener.

In a video posted to Etobicoke Centre Liberal MPP Yvan Baker’s Facebook page, Liberal MPP for Brampton West Vic Dhillon admits he “had no idea about the ramifications” the proposed legislation would have on the restoration business.

Dhillon adds there are “things” the government didn’t think about when it comes to the forestry industry, saying he, “thought they had a valid point.”

In an e-mail to CHML News, Dhillon denounces the PC party for sending out “a partisan press release attacking Liberal members for discussing what was said during committee. This tour is not about hearing one side of the story, and Liberal members of the committee are committed to hearing and considering all perspectives.”

“It is disappointing that the PC party has no interest in changing their position on Bill 148,” wrote Dhillon.


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The video was posted following the first committee hearing in Thunder Bay Monday.

The hearings come to Hamilton on July 20.

READ MORE: Ontario seeks public input on $15 minimum wage

The labour reforms would hike the minimum wage, ensure equal pay for part-time workers, increase vacation entitlements and expand personal emergency leave.

Business groups say the increase comes too quickly for some companies to absorb the added costs and will mean some will have to lay workers off or close entirely.

But a group of 50 Canadian economists recently signed a letter in support of a $15 an hour minimum wage, saying the idea that it will kill jobs, raise prices and cause businesses to flee Ontario is fear mongering that is out of line with the latest economic research.

Below is the full statement from Brampton West Liberal MPP Vic Dhillon:

Right now, the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs is travelling across the province on a 10-day, 10-city tour to hear directly from Ontarians on the proposals in Bill 148. This is a serious conversation about the future of employment in Ontario, and Liberal members have made it clear we intend to listen and learn from Ontarians and relay all the feedback heard at committee to the government before amendments are created.

We had thought all parties understood that this part of the committee process is an opportunity to learn from Ontarians. However, recently, the PC party sent out a partisan press release attacking Liberal members for discussing what was said during committee. This tour is not about hearing one side of the story, and Liberal members of the committee are committed to hearing and considering all perspectives.

It is disappointing that the PC party has no interest in changing their position on Bill 148. They have made it clear that they oppose the bill, they oppose increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour and they actively oppose efforts to create fairer employment standards.

Vic Dhillon MPP, Brampton West

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